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Movie Reviews

'LBJ': Offers Hope From the Past
Viewers uninterested in politics and American history probably won't enjoy the insight and philosophical ruminations ventured by director Rob Reiner in his savvy biopic, "LBJ." Detailing the momentous ebb and flow of the times just before and after the ascension of Lyndon Baines Johnson to the presidency of the United States in
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'Suburbicon': Where Seldom Is Heard a Tolerant Word
My rich sister Ann has regularly informed that "It's always about the money, especially if they say it's not about the money." Whether she influenced the deservedly famous Coen Brothers, Joel and Ethan, or they figured out the maxim themselves, they have made a successful film career of exploring and dramatizing
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'Victoria and Abdul': The Queen and I
Remember the first time you heard someone opine that "The rich get richer and the poor get more children?" You looked up from your playpen and thought, "Gee, that's not a very good starting point. Guess I'll have to grow up to be either rich or a social reformer, whatever that is?"   Thus, faced with
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'Professor Marston and the Wonder Women': La Différence to the Rescue
I was a terrible grammar school student. Bored out of my mind, I survived the droning lessons by drawing cars and baseball stadiums. It also didn't help that I was rather sleepy in class, the result of loving, liberal parents who allowed me to watch old movies on TV way past a growing boy's acceptable bedtime. The one exception to this
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'Blade Runner 2049': Virtual Truth & Justice
I'm not exactly sure what I saw, but I kind of think it was sort of OK, maybe. It's quite a tussle trying to follow the unnecessarily convoluted story in Denis Villeneuve's "Blade Runner 2049." The miasmic visuals of the scorched Earth scenario frustratingly obscure the gist of the thing. Yet, when the complicating fog
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'Battle of the Sexes': We've Come a Long Way, Baby
Watching Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris's "Battle of the Sexes," about the events leading up to the famous gender war/tennis match on Sept. 20, 1973, between woman's champion Billie Jean King and former great Bobby Riggs, I tried to remember what I thought at the time. I like to think I applauded the dispelling of
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'Brad's Status': What's It All About, Alfie?
In "Brad's Status," Brad Sloan nearly drives us crazy with his unremitting regret and self-doubt as he accompanies his son, Troy, played by Austin Abrams, to look at colleges in Boston. Oh, we all do it. That's how we keep score. It's just that Brad, portrayed by Ben Stiller, is especially effective in showing us how
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'Mother!': Oh, Brother!
Fearing that I might be scarred for life after seeing Darren Aronofsky's "Mother!" I am happy to relate that slowly but surely the grotesque concepts and visions of this postmodern horror film are dissipating from my fragile and offended psyche. I mean, I am safe, aren't I? Hopefully it's not part of a grander
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'The Good Catholic': It's a Matter of Faith
Filmmaker Paul Shoulberg's "The Good Catholic" is a convenient, pocket-sized edition of ruminations just right for the soul in search of a quick philosophical challenge. While there's nothing new about this tale of temptation and the emotional tumult it sets in motion, the general quality of the human beings it brings to the
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'Tulip Fever': When Speculation Was in Bloom
A fascinating backdrop for an intricate if not convoluted, seriocomic love story that could have very well been written by Nöel Coward gives director Justin Chadwick's "Tulip Fever" an arthouse cachet. But while patience is a virtue, the esoteric appeal of this costumed affair set in 17th-century Holland may require more
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